The Syracuse Orange (3-2, 0-1) are aiming to make it three straight wins. Standing in the way of that goal: the N.C. State Wolfpack (3-2, 0-1), a team that’s experienced similar struggles to SU and could also really use a victory here. State’s coming off a bye too, but lost their previous game to FSU. However, Thursday nights down in Raleigh are usually a tough environment and the Orange are 1-5 all-time at Carter-Finley Stadium.
Before this one gets going on Thursday at 8 p.m. ET on ESPN, the TNIAAM staff weighs in on the game:
Syracuse 24, NC State 20
I think this contest gets ugly, with neither team doing a whole lot of anything on offense early on. Syracuse’s secondary is banged up, but will be able to take advantage of a new quarterback and a new left tackle to attack NC State’s pass game and make them one dimensional. If Syracuse is going to score enough points to win this one, Abdul Adams and Moe Neal are going to need to fed often, and not just on the ground. I think we see plenty of running back involvement in the passing game, leading to just enough offense to squeeze out a victory for the Orange.
Syracuse 33, NC State 31
Neither team has inspired a lot of confidence in their offense. Look for NC State to continue their short passing game to try and keep the Orange pass rush neutralized. I think that both defenses will bend but not break leaving the teams to settle for field goal attempts in the red zone. Syracuse’s edge in the kicking game will prove to be the difference as they leave Raleigh with a narrow victory.
Syracuse 34, NC State 28
The whole premise of football is to put points on the board, and both teams seem to not be able to do that with abandon. However, Syracuse wants to put the ball in the air against a NC State secondary that isn’t great. If the offensive line can put together enough of a performance to get DeVito in a passing rhythm, the Orange walk away victorious. I didn’t say anything about pretty. There’s no “pretty” in the win column, so I’ll take whatever we can get.
Syracuse 31, NC State 27
This one should come down to which defensive line can get the better push, as Tommy DeVito’s been under siege for much of the year and State installs a new starter this week in Bailey Hockman (definitely Hockman Bailey). We know what DeVito can do with time, but that also requires the run game to get going. If Moe Neal and Abdul Adams can move the ball on the ground, it should open things up enough for him to get SU out ahead and have the Pack passing more (playing right into a blitz-happy defense’s preference).
Now it’s your turn...
Who will win the Syracuse vs. NC State game?
This poll is closed
Syracuse by 11 or more, and we’re BACK!
Syracuse by 1-10 points, and we’re going places
NC State by 1-10 points, and them’s the breaks
NC State by 11 or more and... uh oh